Racing down the steps on the train to get to the door, I stumbled, skipped a step and took a tumble. Fellow passengers caught me so I didn’t land on my head. However I knew I had it bad. My right foot didn’t feel right. With support I got off the train. Riding up in the elevator to the walkway, a slight wobble made my right foot press on the floor. Before I knew it, waves of nausea hit and I crumpled to the floor, passing out. In seconds, my kind co-passengers called 911. Firemen, first response unit and paramedics arrived in that order, taking me to the ER. Luckily X-ray revealed nothing broken, but I had severely torn ligaments, which was why the awful pain, doctor explained. Gave me crutches and a sweet friend took me home. And that’s where this post begins.
Dear reader, have you ever torn a ligament? The pain!! Ever wondered why it happened? Could be like me you were rushing around and didn’t pay attention. In yoga, injuries and falls have a message in them. The universe sends us messages in many many forms, through family, friends and injuries sometimes. My message was pretty loud and clear. I’ve been running around a lot lately trying to pack in too much. I needed to slow down. I wouldn’t have if I hadn’t got this rude awakening. Forced to stay home and recover, I couldn’t drive as this was my driving foot. I couldn’t go shopping which is such a passion. I couldn’t even cook. Try standing on one foot only :) My life pretty much came to a standstill. I spent the last couple of days just recovering, receiving delicious meals lovingly prepared by friends. Resting a lot, sleeping a lot, meditating a lot and just getting that much needed rest I hadn’t allowed my body.
When I posted my status on Facebook, friends chipped in with offers of help and some great mnemonics on how to recover.This one stayed with me, but I’ve added my own extra elements to it. My friend suggested RICE, I turned it around to THRICES
Turmeric is a great anti-inflammatory. Mix 1 tsp turmeric with 1 tsp coconut oil to make a thick paste. Apply to inflamed part and let dry. Wear an old pair of socks, I wore a pair of old tights and then socks on top to keep the foot a little compressed with the paste. Apsara secret- you can always make turmeric paste by mixing water with turmeric. But best benefits when turmeric is dissolved in fat. Curcumin, the main component of turmeric is fat soluble. I suggested coconut oil, but any fat will do. Turmeric is supposed to speed up healing time by 3 times. Now why would you say NO to that yellow foot when you know you’re helping that poor foot heal & move away from pain?
Humour.. can you laugh? Easy right. Anyone can laugh, especially at your own self. I found my swollen foot quite fascinating, Being a skinny kind of girl, I’ve always dreamed of a chubby figure. I know, I know, the grass is always greener, others want skinny. I’ve thought I’d look attractive if I gained a few pounds. I’m not to blame! Blame it on my upbringing. In Delhi, a chubbier girl :) is prized!!. at least used to be the case when i lived there. But that’s not happening – this is my body type and that’s what its going to be. I can’t help smiling at the contrast between my feet. and thinking what a popular girl I would be,, for those men who like to see a little plumpness around feet :)
Rest was what I got a lot of. I didn’t do any thinking activity even. I just took a complete break. My foot was badly injured. It needed all the attention possible from me and from everyone. Think about it. All the body’s intelligence is now on high alert. All resources are being directed to my foot to help aid the healing process. If I started to divert attention through engaging the intellect, chances of recovery would slow down. As my mind would use up those valuable resources.
Ice helped. My foot had a lot of inflammation. A thoughtful friend brought me an ice pack from the drugstore. The idea behind ice is its role in reducing pain and inflammation. Cold ice reduces blood flow to the damaged ligament. That is supposed to lower the speed that nerve cells send electrical signals. Lowering tissue temperature also slows down inflammation. And that cuts down pain. Apsara secret – I used ice intermittently as ice can also slow down my own body’s immune system and prevent my body from repairing itself. Besides, the ice pack does get to room temperature soon and needs another stint in the freezer before its ready to reuse. No ice pack, no worries, put your frozen peas from your freezer to good use. Place it on your swollen foot and tie a towel on top.
Compression on a torn ligament helps ease the pain and reduces swelling. Wrap an elastic bandage from mid-calf down to your toes. The bandage should be tight, but it should not cut off the circulation. Apsara tip – No bandage, no worries, use regular socks on top of cut off nylons. That will do the trick.
Elevate the injured limb above your heart whenever possible to help prevent or limit swelling. Elevate to decrease bleeding. Elevate to drain excess fluid from injured area. I did some yoga moves. Doing dishes at the kitchen sink while standing on one foot, I managed to rest and elevate, how’s that :) for a 2-for-1?
Stretching is good. You don’t have to stay in bed all the time. Nor do you have to breakout into an intense workout routine. But you can surely do a few stretches. As I hobbled on my crutches, I didn’t lay much weight on my injured foot, but I did turn it one time externally and the next step internally. Bit by bit, i want to wakeup my poor foot. If you decide to do a few stretches do them in moderation. And by all means, stretch the rest of your body, its ok right, it doesnt have to go all inactive on you! :)
Here is another opinion I’d like to leave you with, so you can make an informed approach to your own ligament healing. This medical doctor doesn’t believe in ice or rest!!
Your ligaments are tough, elastic-like bands. They connect bone to bone and hold your joints in place. A sprain is an injury to a ligament caused by tearing of the fibers of the ligament. The ligament can have a partial tear, or it can be completely torn apart. I don’t know if mine was partial or not, just that the pain was excruciating!!!
Its 4 days since I twisted my foot, and I’m on the path to recovery. The most important tool is my cheer. Can’t emphasize having a positive attitude enough. It helps the healing process as endorphins can flood your body with much needed healing energy!! Stay healthy.and let me know. Did you find my post helpful? What else do you do?